Week One Word: Called
Week One Text: Romans 8:30
Written by: Whitney Putnam
“And having chosen them, he called them to come to him. And having called them, he gave them right standing with himself. And having given them right standing, he gave them his glory.” Romans 8:30
Today we launch into The Year of Calling. Understanding what we are called to do and called to be in light of the gospel. Our very first word?
You have been called.
Seven years ago, I walked down an aisle to a tall red-headed man to the song, “Come Thou Fount” knowing that marriage would be a waltz of tuning my heart to grace over and over again. That day, I walked with full understanding that the red carpet beneath my feet would usher me into covenant love.
Covenant is defined as:
(Merriam-Webster): a usually formal, solemn agreement
(Wikipedia; Religious): a formal alliance or agreement made by God with a religious community or with humanity in general
That specific day is a blur to me, but pictures remind me of its beauty. And if I sit long enough and stare at the pictures, I can hear the voices. Voices of Michael’s best friend calling us into a covenant love as he officiated the wedding, voices of two little kids reading Ephesians 5:25-30 to a room full of people, and all the people we love singing with us:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty.”
Because we believe this is a day angels rejoiced.
But if I get quiet enough, I can hear one voice crisp. Clear.
“I, Michael, take you, Whitney.”
“Whitney.” (I form the words in my mouth to feel them and hear them again). “Whitney.”
Michael was calling me into his love for me. He chose me. Out of all 3.52 billion women in the world, Michael said yes to spending his days with me — and all my crazy ideas, annoying quirks, and hidden habits; hoping that we might cultivate a life that honors God and honors one another.
Hoping that our covenant love would last.
As I form my name over and over again in my mouth (you can form yours, too), I begin to remember how special I felt that evening.
Called by this man who hoped for a covenant love that will last.
To this day, Michael and I are striving for our covenant love, but it would mean nothing if we didn’t hold to a calling, a love stronger than ours. Because according to Romans 8:30, the God of the Universe is forming our names over and over again in His mouth. He kept forming our names until He sent His Son, Jesus, to die for us.
And this is just how much you and I are loved by God:
“Yet the Lord was pleased to crush him [Jesus] severely.” (Isaiah 53:10) For you.
Because you have been called to be wrapped up with God.
Into His covenant love.
And once you find yourself waltzing to the tune of God’s grace, you can begin to hear the whispers of Jesus interceding for you. Whispering your name. Forming it in His mouth. My blood for hers. My body for her body.
And we slowly dance, “Come thou fount of every blessing, tune my heart to sing thy grace.”
You, my friend, have been called.
1. Find five minutes to sit alone and envision Jesus forming your name on His lips. How does this make you feel? Take some time to journal “Dear God, when I picture You saying my name…”
2. Knowing you are in a covenant love frees you to live more abundantly, giving yourself away. Write down three things you want to focus on this year in light of your covenant love.
3. Sit down and listen to the song, “Come Thou Fount.” Whom can you remind that they, too, have been called into this love–full of mercy and grace? How can you remind them?
4. If you have been married and that marriage has been broken, or if you feel like your marriage is broken, how does knowing Jesus’ love is full + complete + eternal encourage your heart?